Saturday, February 19, 2011

Blast from the Past

[One Stop Poetry has posted a fun prompt: to go back to the beginning and post our earliest poems.
I started writing poetry in 1960, at age 14. The words poured through me like I was doing automatic writing. I have no idea where they came from, but they poured forth like a fountain, and were as angst-ridden as most teen poetry is. I often wrote feverishly through class, and the teachers overlooked my inattention, since I seemed unable to stop. Here are two poems from 1961, when I was 15.]

We walk in half-steps.
Let my kindred spirit
(submerged within
the masked
and groping present)
Grasp hands; as giants fleeing
before the wind,
Let us find Truth:
the depth of life's
real beauty;
Or wander into spring
on trembling willow-whispers;
Or waft with summer's
mellow tranquillity.
Let us claim stark beauty
unadorned: a naked tree
Pointing a time-bent bough,
a rain-wet street and,
After dark, a haunting melody
that softly fades
And dies away.

***      ****       ***      ****     ***
The dusk offers its sacrifice
to the gods
of the turbulent fountains.
A faint star gleams.
A token dream
sings through
the misty mountains.
The clouds part:
Dusk presents its face-
day's grim reward for dying.
A whisper echoes
o'er green meadows:
tear-stained peace
which follows crying.
The melancholy theme
of night begins
its song of sadness.
A memory rides
on wings of might
in a breeze's burlesque;
the madness
of untended,
searing pain
a yearning
in the breast,
and the heart requites
love's bitt'rest thoughts
in wild unrest.
A shadow falls.
Dusk's gray defeat
of day deserts
to Night
with its parade
of haunted dreams,
before the sight.


  1. Such skill at so young an age, wonderful! You had early insight into the craft.

  2. Wow, how did these even survive all these years? You must have squirreled them away carefully. Do you feel as odd as many of the rest of us do, in reading poetry written by a very different, much younger you?

  3. o my god! You've always been amazing! :D:D:D *proud*

  4. Sherry, how very neat to be able to read some of your very early poems. Interestingly enough, your style of writin, the way you frame verses, is pretty much the same as your poetry today. You were a very sensitive young woman. I like your early work.

  5. I'm properly and duly impressed. Wow! And I can see and hear you in these all these years later. You have always had a gift. What a wonderful way to see life and be able to express it. That photo is great as well, she actually looks very familiar, lol.

    Hugs, my friend,


  6. It is interesting to look back - though it feels like a hundred years:) -- those were pain-filled years, but years that launched me on my path. Thank you all for visiting:)

  7. Even as a teen you had enormous talent! I love these poems. Very vivid, rich, and emotive.

  8. YOU words flow like music; Yes your talent was there, from the get go~ You so need to write a book! I love the imagery you wove!
    You were gorgeous; Love the photo~

  9. They almost flow into each other, with their gentle melancholy and blue-tinted, sunset world. Very evocative of that fraught and puzzled time in one's life, and very simply and beautifully expressed. Glad you were able to hang on to them. The two I drug out today were typed on old onion skin paper, so yellow and brittle I was almost afraid to handle them. But somehow they and us have survived it all. Amazing!

  10. I see that your clear eye for the wonders of nature and the link to human emotion was well-developed in you from your teens. I enjoyed both of these poems immensely - not many 15 year olds write like this today.

    Beautiful lines:
    a naked tree
    Pointing a time-bent bough,
    a rain-wet street and,
    After dark, a haunting melody
    that softly fades
    And dies away.

  11. these are really good giants lfeeing before the wind...what a cool line....

  12. Thank you, my friends. It was a very cool look back - such a long journey!

  13. You were a very talented 15 year old :) Thanks for sharing, and thanks for stopping by my site :)

  14. Wow! Such a mature voice for a 15 year old! These poems are just lovely in their melancholy. "Dusk presents its face-day's grim reward for dying" is beautiful. But there are so many amazing images here. Thanks for sharing your younger poet self!

  15. That sweet face and those angst-filled words...the poet in you burst forth early and brilliantly, Sherry! How wonderful that you found that outlet at a time you really needed it, and how grand to know it will never leave you...:)


I so appreciate you taking the time to read and comment.
Thank you so much. I will be over to see you soon!